Tuesday, 12 April 2011
The woods at Middlewood
The woodland at Middlewood, at the north east corner of the site, is located on the site of Worsley New Hall, built by the 1st Earl of Ellesmere in 1840-45, and the terraced gardens which were constructed in conjunction with the Hall and laid out by William Nesfield. Under the care of some very well respected head gardeners the gardens became well established, were regularly the subject of press articles, and were widely visited by the aristocracy and Queen Victoria. The Hall was abandoned after the second world war, subsequently demolished, and the gardens fell into decline.
This is a Larch plantation that was planted in 1955 after the slip road from the M60 was built, it was originaly intended for comercial production but was later canceled, I love this part of the wood, its perfectly straight line planting and this huge Beech which stands out from the Larch, evokes a very carming reaction from me.
This is the lake which was the lower part of the garden, its a stunning lake which has a very nice ice house.
During the winter, ice and snow would be taken into the ice house and packed with insulation, often straw or sawdust. It would remain frozen for many months, often until the following winter, and could be used as a source of ice during summer months.
There are some fantastic trees in the wood which is mainly broadleaf appart from the Larch plantation and the overgrown gardens. But this Sweet Chestnut really stands out, I'm not too sure of its age or history but I'm sure it could tell a few storys from over the years.
Next to it for scale is my friend Wayland.
There is also this fantastic Beech, which has grown in an odd way.
Its twisted branches and stunted height make it very story book like.
I couldnt help myself and had to have a climb on its twisted fussed branches.
I really like this woodland which does have some age and history which date back to the 1770s and camping there is always a memorable experience.